FACTORS AFFECTING INFORMATION ACCESS IN DEVELOPING WORLD SCHOOLS: A CASE STUDY OF A PRIVATE SCHOOL DISTRICT IN THE PHILIPPINES
Walla Walla University (UNITED STATES)
About this paper:
Appears in: INTED2010 Proceedings
Publication year: 2010
Conference name: 4th International Technology, Education and Development Conference
Dates: 8-10 March, 2010
Location: Valencia, Spain
Abstract:Development literature proposes that ICTs will bridge the information gap that exists between developed and developing nations. Over time, theory has moved from seeing technology as “the” answer to seeing it as one tool in the development toolkit. Because an educated population able to access appropriate information is a key principle in development, the study examines ICT adoption in schools. ICT uptake in developing world schools is disappointing and this study identifies key factors in the literature that seem to inhibit ICT adoption. Both external and internal factors such as infrastructure, cost, ICT availability, leadership, planning, training and attitudes were identified. These are examined in a case study of a private school district in the Philippines. A variety of data-gathering methods were used: (1) surveying school district educators; (2) collecting data and photographs from the school district; (2) conducting in-depth interviews with the education superintendent; and (4) reviewing government and ICT industry documents. Findings show that ICT/library use in the school district is influenced by: (1) regional infrastructure; (2) cost or perceived cost of ICTs; (3) lack of consistent and visionary ICT/information access planning and leadership; (4) lack of training in ICTs and in the pedagogy of implementing ICTs in the classroom. Positive attitudes were shown to have little effect on ICT implementation while these barriers exist. Results confirm that ICTs can be used to bridge the information gap in the school district but that other key tools, such as planning, leadership, or training, must precede or accompany it.
Keywords: Information gap, ICTs in schools, Barriers to ICT Implementation.